The Tale of Despereaux (2008)

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The Tale of Despereaux

released: 2008

rated: G

length: 93 min.

age: 6+

interests: mice, rats, castles, princesses, cooking, updated fairy tales, adventure

Next: read the book!

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The Tale of Despereaux

despereaux

NEWBERY MEDAL WINNER – 2004

The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread

by Kate diCamillo

Age: 7+

Interests: mice, castles, princesses, rats, soup, cooking

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The Door in the Wall

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NEWBERY MEDAL WINNER – 1950

The Door in the Wall

by Margeurite de Angeli

Age: 9+

Interests: history, medieval history, British history, knights, castles, religion, overcoming physical handicaps

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A Dictionary of Chivalry

baynes_chivalry

GREENAWAY MEDAL WINNER – 1968

A Dictionary of Chivalry

by Grant Uden

illustrations by Pauline Baynes

Age: 9+

Interests: history, British history, knights, medieval history, war

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Adam of the Road

Adam of the Road

NEWBERY MEDAL WINNER – 1943

Adam of the Road

by Elizabeth Janet Gray (aka Elizabeth Gray Vining)

Age: 8+ (read to); 9+ (independent reading)

Interests: history, medieval times, British history, knights, castles, dogs, travel, adventure

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The Little White Horse

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WINNER OF THE CARNEGIE MEDAL – 1946

The Little White Horse

by Elizabeth Goudge

University of London Press: 1946

238 pages – 12 chapters

Age: 7 (read to); 9 (independent reading)

Interests: magic, mystery, animals, castles, princesses, England, aristocracy, religion, family history, romance

NB: This book was adapted into a 1994 BBC series entitled Moonacre and a 2009 movie The Secret of Moonacre.

Next: The Secret Garden or A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

Also by this author: Island Magic

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Sleeping Beauty and Other Favourite Fairy Tales

GREENAWAY MEDAL WINNER – 1982

Sleeping Beauty and Other Favourite Fairy Tales

Angela Carter, translation

Michael Foreman, illustrations

Victor Gollancz Ltd, 1982

128 pp. – 12 stories

Age: 7 +

Interests: fairy tales, adventure, magic, princesses, princes, castles, ogres

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May I Bring a Friend?

CALDECOTT MEDAL WINNER – 1965

May I Bring a Friend?

written by Beatrice Schenk de Regniers

illustrated by Beni Montresor

Simon & Schuster, 1964

42 pp.

Age: 2+

Interests: animals, royalty, castles, zoo, manners, invitations

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The Enchanted Castle

The Enchanted Castle

by E. Nesbit

originally published in 1907

New York: HarperCollins, 1992

288 pp, 12 chapters

Age: (read to) 6 + ; (read independently) 8 +

Interests: magic, castles, treasure, siblings, mystery, adventure

Also by this author: Five Children and It, The Railway Children, The Story of the Treasure Seekers, The Book of Dragons

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Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968)

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Released: 1968
Rated: G
Length: 144 min. (with an intermission at the 1:27 mark)
Age: 6 and up            Commensense Media sez: 6 +

Scary Factor: fantasy adventure story abounds in peril but all is exaggerated and cartoonish; the Baron and his spies are too bumbling to be truly scary; the Child Catcher on the other hand is extremely creepy, he’s the scariest thing in the movie, especially when he captures Jemima and Jeremy

Intense Scenes: all the children living underground is a rather pathetic sight, it stuck with me as a child; Caractacus and Truly posing as dolls is a bit suspenseful, but mostly amusing

Questionable Language: apparently Grandpa says “ass” at some point

Other Violence and Mayhem: the Baron and Baroness are pretty weird, especially the Baron’s sly attempts to do away with his wife, particularly during their cutesy song together before the party; in an earlier scene the Baroness is ejected high into the air, she floats gently down thanks to her large skirts and the Baron hauls out his shotgun and shoots at her! (the resulting holes in her billowing skirt bring her down quickly, and he expresses disappointment that he only hit her skirt!)

Interests: cars, inventions, magic, action, adventure, castles, scientists, inventors, spies, musicals

Next: Ian Fleming book Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (very different plot)
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All writings posted here are © Kim Thompson, unless otherwise indicated. For all artwork on this site, copyright is retained by the artist.